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  1. ITV Report

Children happier when they play outdoors according to research

Photo: ITV West Country

Allowing children to play safely in the street makes for more active youngsters and happier communities according to research from a Bristol organisation.

Playing Out was started by parents to encourage children to exercise and socialise outdoors safely.

A new report published by the group says children playing outside is creating happier, more cohesive communities and healthier children around the country.

Children playing outside is a factor in a happy community according to Playing Out. Credit: ITV West Country

The report says that by playing outdoors children are learning important skills such as cycling and are practising social skills.

Residents surveyed reported a greater sense of community, with children feeling it is normal to be out playing and dropping in to each other's houses.

Local Playing Out groups organise street parties and community events. Credit: ITV West Country

A separate report by University of Bristol suggests this low-cost, grassroots model could see children three to five times more active during organised outdoor play sessions than they would be on a 'normal' day after school.

Playing Out say it's important for the future that children play outdoors.

"This growing movement is really starting to challenge the idea that 'playing out' is a thing of the past. Children today need the chance to be outside, active, making friends and being part of their communities just as much as we did a generation ago."

– Alice Ferguson, Playing Out's co-founder and Director

You can find out more about more about Playing Out on their website